BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - What was supposed to be one of the happiest days in Trea McMillan’s life turned into one of the scariest.
“We had our second child no November 9th--had some complications--it was looking pretty severe,” McMillan explains.
The situation landed them in Birmingham... three hours from home.
Not sure how long they'd have to stay, they turned to the Ronald McDonald House.
“Just having a place to eat and sleep and be safe and be comfortable and have a hot meal has been pretty awesome,” McMillan says.
Providing that sense of stability for families whose children are hospitalized is the goal of the Ronald McDonald House.
But providing food and lodging for seventy-three families at one time requires a budget of about 2.1 million dollars.
That's why donations like those given on Giving Tuesday are a huge help.
“When you give back, you provide peace for them at one of the most difficult times in their lives,” says Katherine Estes Billmeier.
This year, the house hoped to reach a goal of ten-thousand dollars in donations.
By early afternoon they had surpassed that, but Marianne Sharbel, who helped create the House nearly forty years ago, is not surprised.
“We say that we're the house that love built. But this is the community that love built because people in this community are so giving,” Sharbel says.
And it's families like Trae McMillan's that directly benefit.
“It's just made it that much easier verses having to room with friends or commute back and forth...it's given us that peace of mind,” McMillan says.